Too many of us go through life wearing blinders. I bet you sport a pair at least some of the time.
The blinders you wear make it hard for you to see past what is directly in front of you. While that’s what blinders do—help you focus without distraction, sometimes you are better off not wearing them so you can choose what to see and where to place your attention.
Three Types of Blinders
But what type of blinders are you wearing? I believe there are three basic “fashions.”
- Vision Blinders: Blinder you have chosen to shut out anything but what you want to see.
- Focus Blinders: Blinders you have chosen to help you focus on what is necessary or a priority.
- Borrowed Blinders: Blinders someone else placed on you for some reason.
You might be wearing blinders of a different type. But each blinder serves a purpose. However, wearing blinders of any sort all the time becomes a hindrance rather than a help. And when that happens, it’s time to do whatever it takes to remove the blinders.
If you don’t like to look at things that make you upset, angry, hopeless, sad, overwhelmed, or stressed in any way, you are wearing vision blinders. This apparatus helps you only see what you choose to see. You look at what you want and nothing else.
It’s a good idea to remove these blinders—at least for a part of every day. If you don’t, as planned, you’ll only see—and experience—a select number of things. If you continue to wear them, your perspective won’t grow or change to accommodate changes happening in and around your life. You won’t even be aware of them.
Also, you won’t develop an understanding of other people, events, or places that don’t fall within the visual rage your blinders allow you to see. But if you take the blinders off, you can see, experience, and understand other things, other perspectives, other people.
Sometimes blinders are necessary, such as when you want to concentrate on a task or increase your productivity. We live in an Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) world. All of us feel our attention pulled in different directions all the time. Indeed, an enormous amount of things vie for our attention moment to moment. Blinders help us keep these keep these distractions to a minimum.
Focus blinders can be put on and taken off at will. They come in handy when you have a deadline, a job to do, a situation to handle, or just want some peace.
They are a useful tool, but, like other blinders, shouldn’t be worn all the time. Constant wear can transform them into Vision Blinders. And, as explained, you don’t want to block your vision 24–7.
Occasionally, you may find yourself wearing borrowed blinders. These are given to you by friends, family members, bosses, politicians, religious leaders, and the like. Wearing these makes you see the world, yourself, and events a certain way.
Almost like magic glasses, these blinders make it impossible for you to see events, people, and situations any way other than the way the person who lent you the blinders sees them. You may want to see them this way; you might believe this is the right way to see.
But it may not be, and you won’t know that unless you return these blinders to their owner. Only then can you make up your mind about what you see.
Give these blinders back with gratitude. Once you do so, you can decide what you think or feel about any given person, situation, event. But for that to happen, you have to be able to see it anew.
Stop Wearing Blinders and See Everything
Blinders can prove enormously useful…or become problematic. That’s why it’s best to become conscious of the fact that you are wearing blinders. Then decide which ones you want to wear—and when you want or need to wear them.
The rest of the time, leave them sitting on the kitchen counter. Go out without blinders, and see the world in all its diversity and glory. Experience your life in a different and varied way.
What kind of blinders have you been wearing? And what happens when you take them off? Tell me about that experience in a comment below.
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Photo courtesy of motionshooter / 123RF Stock Photo
2 thoughts on “Don’t Go Through Life Wearing Blinders”
I just found your article on google and read it. I agree that we need to see some things but not others. One experience I have right now is I’m blind and can’t see. Now the way I operate is if I don’t like someone or know someone or care to know him/her I don’t care what you tell me about that person, but if I really want to meet the person, am friends with them or related to them, or have a crush on that person or have a relationship with him, then I absolutely hate it when people like my mother tell me about any bad thing they see them do or a bad trait they notice for example my mother told me about a lot of my friends not wearing masks or social distancing. Even though nobody’s perfect and I know that, I still would rather just not know the bad in people I have in my life and only know the good. My mother and I got into it about it and she said to me “you can’t go through life with blinders on, you need to deal with your emotions, that’s no way to live” and I said “well it is for me”. People don’t understand that when I don’t know things or I hear what I want to hear I’m happy and life can’t be any better, but the second someone like my mother tells me about something bad my friend or my crush did then it’s like I’m shocked, hurt, and heart-broken and my life is ruined. I feel like sometimes knowing the truth about my loved ones does me more harm than good. One good thing is though I’m not blind when it comes to other things, just with people I love then that’s when I want to have the blinders on unless I ever don’t like them anymore.
It’s all choice, Nicki…and you get to choose! And boundaries are good when it comes to family.